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1 October, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Positivity in heartbreaking defeat

Youngsters ignite hope of making Tigers indomitable
Sports Reporter
Positivity in heartbreaking defeat
Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza gestures during fielding against India in the final of Asia Cup at Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Friday. BCB photo

The Asia Cup title once again eluded Bangladesh as they agonisingly fell short of the target but that didn’t hamper the mood of the team given the fact that some of the problems that have been haunting them for long looked fixed for the time being.

The headache was to fix a permanent partner for Tamim in the opening slot and a middle order batsman to support Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmudullah Riyad. Bangladesh however got those two in Liton Das and Mohammad Mithun who demonstrated their skill in difficult condition to give the team management some relief. In addition, the bowling of Mustafizur Rahman also ensured the team management that he could be the bowling leader what was aspired from him.

The injury of Tamim Iqbal and Shakib Al Hasan also gave the team management a cushion to experiment with some other players in the series against Zimbabwe and West Indies at home as the World Cup is approaching fast. While it looked that Shakib would miss both of the series, Tamim who returned country yesterday night could play the series against West Indies.

However Mashrafe Bin Mortaza refused to be so relaxed with the team combination at the moment as he is in favour to judge them more.

“The positive outcome of the tournament is Liton and Mithun who showed the skill and talent to fill the two places, for which we were concerned. At the moment it’s tough to say how consistent they could be and how long they can go but it is sure that they have the skill to thrive in this level,” said Mashrafe after returning home with his team from Dubai.

“What is another positive sign is that Mustafizur is back with full rhythm. Considering his rhythm is imperative for our success, it’s a huge positive sign.”

It was Bangladesh’s sixth loss in the final and second consecutive loss in the final in the last ball, both against India but Mashrafe said the players showed no sign of being broken heart, knowing that they have the ability to win against a mighty team even without some key players.

“The players remained mentally tough even though they came close again but lost the game. Despite being in limitation, they have the willpower. We can’t lift the title but we can proud for what we had done in the tournament.”

But Mashrafe stressed on the requirement of overcoming the mental barrier in the final match.

“May be 250/260 could be enough to win what we couldn’t do because of middle order collapse. But you can’t expect the middle order will play everyday. There is no doubt regarding the skill of Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah. Just the day was not for us.”

However Bangladesh’s head coach Steve Rhodes remained optimistic about the team’s chances in near future despite Bangladesh yet again failed to get past the final hurdle in a multi-nation tournament after doing all the hard work.

"I am not too worried about the past. I think we are not very far from achieving it (winning a tournament). Once we do that it will give us that mental space where we can think and successfully overcome the pressure of the final. Winning tournaments is like a habit,” Rhodes said.

"There were lot of positives like the way Liton batted in the final or Mithun getting two 60-odd scores or Mehidy trying to establish himself as an all-rounder. Our spinners and pace bowlers bowled well while we were clinical as a fielding unit on quite a few occasions. Overall we could have a good look at our squad and playing without Shakib and Tamim and going this far is quite remarkable," he opined.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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